Biscotti

My signature holiday gift to my friends and co-workers is biscotti.  After years of making fancier shaped cookies, I found that these easier cookies are just as appreciated and I don’t need to plan days into my hectic holiday schedule for baking.  I package up a few pieces with an individual Ghiradelli cocoa mix and voila! A sweet cozy gift made with love.

This year I experiment by using self rising flour instead of all purpose flour and found  this produces much more ‘professional’ looking biscotti, so I have converted some old favorites to this method.  The Cranberry and Pistachio recipe is perfect for the holidays – their red and green colors look so festive !  The second recipe uses a  new favorite flavor, Hazelnut. I developed this recipe using hazelnut flour I had left over from making macarons. You could substitute almond flour/meal for the hazelnut flour as well OR use all self rising flour.  (btw –  Trader Joes has almond meal at a VERY reasonable price.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti

Ingredients:

  • 1 stick of butter
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 1/4 cup self rising flour
  • 1 teaspoon freshily grated lemon zest (approx 1 lemon)
  • 2/3 cup dried cramberries
  • 2/3 cup pistachios( shelled and rubbed to remove excess coating)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and lightly grease a cookie sheet or sheet pan.
  2. Mix the butter and sugar, until fluffy.
  3. Add eggs and beat well.
  4. Add flour and mix until incorporated.
  5. Stir in dried cranberries and pistachios.
  6. Divide  the dough in half and shape each half into a 9inch by 2 inch log.  The mixture will be quite sticky so wet your hands with cold water for easier handling.
  7. Place logs several inches apart.  The logs will spread, so allow 2-3 inches between logs.
  8. Bake  for 25-30 minutes.
  9. Remove from oven and cool logs for 5 minutes.  Move logs to a wire rack to cool further, about 10-15 minutes.
  10. Slice the logs, using a serrated knife.  I slice them on the diagonal.
  11. Place the slices cut side down onto an ungreased cookie sheet or sheet pan.
  12. Bake 5 minutes, turn the slices to the other cut side and bake for 5 more minutes.
  13. Cool on a wire rack. then store in an airtight container.

 

Hazelnut Cocoa Biscotti

Ingredients:

  • 1 stick butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup hazelnut flour (or ground hazelnuts)
  • 1 1/2 cups self rising flour
  • 3 Tablespoons cocoa

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and lightly grease a cookie sheet or sheet pan.
  2. Mix the butter and sugar, until fluffy.
  3. Add eggs and beat well.
  4. Add hazelnut flour, flour and cocoa to butter mixture and mix until incorporated.
  5. Divide  the dough in half and shape each half into a 9inch by 2 inch log.  The mixture will be quite sticky so wet your hands with cold water for easier handling.
  6. Place logs several inches apart.  The logs will spread, so allow 2-3 inches between logs.
  7. Bake  for 25-30 minutes.
  8. Remove from oven and cool logs for 5 minutes.  Move logs to a wire rack to cool further, about 10-15 minutes.
  9. Slice the logs, using a serrated knife.  I slice them on the diagonal.
  10.  Place the slices cut side down onto an ungreased cookie sheet or sheet pan.
  11. Bake 5 minutes, turn the slices to the other cut side and bake for 5 more minutes.
  12. Cool on a wire rack then store in an airtight container.

I sometimes ‘upgrade’ my biscotti by dipping one end ,or one side, of each cookie in chocolate .  For a chocolate coating melt chocolate (4oz) with 2 tsp of canola oil. I do this in the microwave 15 seconds at a time, stirring between sessions.  You can also melt the chocolate by putting the chocolate and oil in a bowl over simmering water and stirring the chocolate until melted.  The water should not touch the bottom of the bowl, to prevent scorching.

 

Comments

  1. These are the best biscotti I have ever eaten, and the presentation is as much fun as they are to dip and eat.

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